SLANT: The double barreled shotgun of Facebook

Gargh, talk about shooting yourself in the foot. Not that I haven’t lined up my foot with a double-barreled shotgun and pulled both triggers before, but this one may take the biscuit.

You may have noticed that we’ve been committing a bit of a push to our Facebook page in the recent months. We’ve let the social side of CMG slide a little in the last year and since it offers a good platform to connect to existing and new readers, and we’re all about the Internet, then we figured it was a good time to refocus a little.

SuzukiThis has proved to be a most interesting exercise (really) as the need to have regular postings has meant that we’ve had to reach outside the in-house content and around the web for interesting, funny and perhaps provocative content.

I thought I’d hit a gold seem last week when I stumbled across motorcycle ads from the seventies. For those of you who were fortunate enough not to have lived through the seventies, it was a decade of anything-goes, from communes to sexual liberation and yes, even flares.

It was also a period when the Japanese were firmly establishing themselves in the motorcycle world with a wave of engineering marvels on two wheels.

Honda took the sixties with the classic ad line of “You meet the nicest people on a Honda” but the seventies was a different world and since men bought motorcycles there were a few racier and ultimately misogynistic ads produced.

To me, these are a time capsule of the era and an example of how much things have changed forty years hence. Now the world of motorcycles has evolved into a more inclusive community. Still dominated by men, yes, but with a much welcome ever-increasing female contingent too.

The motorcycle community has embraced this trend and modern motorcycle ads reflect this new world, but I think it’s also important to pause and see how far we’ve come too. Cue the dodgy ads of the seventies series that we ran this week.

The series started with the rather dubious claim that you “get more nookie” on a Suzuki (something generally disproved by older readers’ comments) and culminated with an Italian ad that showed a gal with breast exposed in front of a GT750 (sadly you could see very little of the GT750).

BMW-adAlthough the intent was to highlight how things have changed, a few people who I respect greatly for their ability to sometimes see things that I may miss, strongly questioned the validity of posting such an ad. I conceded, that perhaps I had not framed the post in question properly and opted to remove it.

Two minutes after pressing the delete button, a Facebook message popped up instructing me that we had breached its terms and that it had also deleted the post.

While I didn’t think I needed the berating from Facebook, I do acknowledge that the issue needed to be introduced better than I had done so.

At 47 I was but a child while the seventies was going down in real time, but the 2010s are a very different world – the question I’d like to pose (and hopefully a little better this time), is has motorcycling on the dawn of 2015 truly lost its misogynistic bent? I’d like to think so.


  1. Welcome to the world of political correctness. Where no matter what you do or say, someone will be offended and the powers being (in this case Facebook) has no balls to stand up and say “BULLSHIT”. And I spelled it out on purpose.
    We have to go back and start using common sense again!
    Unfortunately common sense is no longer common.
    If someone does not want to see or read it, DONT LOOK AT IT!
    Because of some idiot, we will now get deprived of some good editorials because of the fear that someone might be offended.
    I run a rather large company and I am politically active and I always tell everyone when they meet me or when they start to work for us, that I AM HIGHLY POITICALLY INCORRECT and if they don’t like what I say or stand for, to avoid me. Do not think that I will change my ways because of a few Idiots out there.
    You don’t like me, don’t take my money or the Job I have to offer.
    Same should go for CMG! I like your editorials. Don’t let some few Idiots push you in to beying something different. There is a VERY small procentage that feels offended and by changing your ways because of them, you might offend all the others. Think about it! If one out of 100 was offended and you change because of it, what do you tell the other 99 that actually liked it> You tell them that “the sqeaky wheel gets the grease” and because the other 99 are quiet about it, the 1% are more important than the other 99%
    My 2 cents

  2. The lords of the new church of social justice are far more self righteous and censorious than any 1970’s Bible thumpers could manage to be in their wettest dreams. At you could ignore or laugh at them, the new breed has weeviled their way into the power structure and will not hesitate to ruin you for thinking bad thoughts.

    • “As you could ignore or laugh at them, the new breed has weeviled their way into the power structure and will not hesitate to ruin you for thinking bad thoughts.”

      Every time that happens someone buys a Nickleback album…

  3. All it takes is one “report this post” whether intentional or in error.

    Personally I use this as a look at how advertising has changed through the years and take no offence.

    Rather, I enjoy the articles.

    I also note that this post does not reflect my gender, and I could choose to misdirect you by changing my name to ‘Ronni’. 😀

  4. I laughed at it, even showed my wife who could laugh. We’ve come a long way for example, only a few years ago you Monster Energy Girls had cheek hanging out of their little suits and the camera would pan up their skirts while the 30 sec board was up, now they can wear pants. Go to a major bike race or show and it is still very influenced by the dirty old (or perhaps young) man.

  5. I have been highway riding for 52 years now and have always subscribed to at least two or three USA and Canadian ‘standard’ motorcycling magazines. My heavily loaded ex fish crates stored away in my shop attic will attest to that. I don’t ever remember such factory ads in North America but I would not be surprised at all of them appearing in European publications or other countries that had a much more open mind in those days than was generally though to be ‘right’ on this continent. Certain Christian religions that were alive and well and very powerful then in NA saw to it that Rock and Roll records were burnt along with evil books and magazines and dancing especially by touching each other was strictly prohibited by some. Times have certainly changed.

  6. Anybody who’d complain about seeing a bit of history and laughing at how silly it all was, needs to go to the humour store and buy a sense.

  7. I liked seeing the ads from the 70’s it was interesting to say the least even my wife had a good laugh at a few of them.
    The people who were complaining were they younger women, older women old men? I’m curious

  8. Check out ‘East Side Moto Babes’ on FB – when women motorcyclists stop seeing themselves as something rare and unusual, then the industry will too.
    Its not double barrel, its some folks trying to have things both ways.
    Let the slagging begin…

    • They are rare and unusual , just as a women’s hunting club would be . As for East Side Moto Babes it’s as narcissistic as most any other club, group or association I see on Facebook , The UPS transport truck driver who came to my home before Christmas summed her motorcycle club of women , as getting together for rides without need for a purpose , evidently the men who won’t let her ride with them have some need to exclude women for some purpose.

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